Acura MDX gets makeover, Sport Hybrid powertrain for 2017

The Acura MDX is getting a "Sport Hybrid" powertrain and a new style for the 2017 model year, with a new-look grille showing off what's to come in the brand's future.

"Showcasing the new face of Acura," as the automaker put it, the 2017 MDX sports a so-called "diamond pentagon grille," which was first seen on the Acura Precision Concept that debuted at the Detroit auto show in January.

The makeover continues with new headlights and foglights, chrome rocker panel covers, twin tailpipes, and restyled bumpers, fenders and hood.

And it's what's under that hood that is perhaps the most noteworthy chage for 2017, with Acura announcing a new electrified powertrain is set to join the crossover's lineup.

Joining the likes of the 2017 NSX and the RLX sedan, the MDX Sport Hybrid is the third model in Acura's lineup to feature a three-motor all-wheel drive powertrain.

The heart of the setup is the same 3.0-litre V6 found in non-hybrid MDX models, which is expected to make 325 horsepower—35 more than the non-hybrid MDX.

Joining the gas engine is a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission with an integrated electric motor powering the front wheels, and two electric motors powering the rear wheels.

Aside from additional power, Acura says the system offers electrified torque vectoring.

Acura expects the MDX Sport Hybrid to receive a city fuel economy rating of 25 mpg from the U.S. EPA, an estimated 7-mpg improvement over the non-hybrid MDX with all-wheel drive.

That's equivalent to roughly 9.4 L/100 km.

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